If you’re like me you’re seeing lots of buzz about collagen these days. You may be like me and even picked up a tub of it to add into your morning smoothies or coffee.
The other morning I heard a report that recent clinical trials have shown that adding a collagen supplement to your diet may yield little visible results.
If it’s been a while since you took biology, you may even be asking:
What is collagen?
Collagen is a protein that provides structure to your bones, skin, tendons and ligaments —much of your body. Its role is functional and cosmetic.
Everyone’s normal aging process causes a decrease in the skin’s natural collagen production and this leads to a number of common skin concerns from lines and wrinkles to a loss of firmness to uneven texture in the skin. When you look in the mirror you see these signs that signal decreased levels of collagen in your skin.
As early as your late 20s you’re already losing collagen and hyaluronic acid which acts much like a ” mattress cover” holding everything together. Over time this cover starts to lose firmness and sag. At 40 you’re losing 1% of your collagen yearly. By the time you’re 50 you’ve lost half of the collagen you had at 20.
Adding a collagen supplement to your diet would be an easy fix but once it’s digested, the body prioritizes where the collagen will be used… where it’s most needed. So if you’re taking it for your skin, your body might use it for your joints if that’s where it’s needed.
A healthy diet helps by supporting the body’s natural process of collagen production. Eating protein-rich foods from plant or animal sources helps supply needed amino acids. Other nutrients that help in the process of producing collagen are zinc, Vitamin C and copper.
Zinc is in dairy, red meat and poultry, along with beans, nuts, crab, lobster and whole grains. Vitamin C is found in citrus fruits, broccoli, cauliflower, green and red peppers, tomatoes, potatoes and winter squash. Copper is in dark chocolate (yea!), leafy greens, shiitake mushrooms, nuts and seeds. I shop the outer perimeter of the grocery store first to fill my cart with produce, meat, dairy, then frozen foods. I try to avoid processed foods as much as possible.
Avoiding things that accelerate collagen damage is crucial. Some things that are associated with creating a decline in collagen are smoking and UV rays. And what you don’t eat is important too like those that are high in sugar or refined carbohydrates including alcohol. These can also have a negative effect on collagen production and promote early aging.
Topical products that include retinoids, vitamin C, serums and hyaluronic acid can help address loss of firmness and uneven skin tone.
Vitamin C and Retinol are the power pair that work together to reveal brighter skin, and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Both retinoids and Vitamin C help improve the appearance the visible signs of aging on skin, caused by decreased collagen levels.
A nighttime retinal serum jump starts your skin’s natural renewing process to smooth the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles revealing younger-looking skin. When adding any retinol product into your routine, it’s good to use it 2-3 nights a week and gradually amp up use up to every other evening. Always layer a nighttime moisturizer on top to minimize flaking.
Dr. Tomi Lee Wall says that a Derma-Roller is also an incredible tool for stimulating collagen. “Within your skin you have cells called fibroblasts, which are the makers of collagen,” Dr. Wall explains. “As you are derma-rolling, you create tiny areas of ‘trauma’ in the skin, which ‘tricks’ your fibroblasts to thinking they need to create more collagen,” she says. This micro-exfoliating Derma-Roller is part of the our Redefine Amp MD System. The Derma-Roller uses micro-exfoliating tips to condition the uppermost layer of skin and boosts the performance of other products. This improves absorption and amplifies the results of Intensive Renewing Serum layered on top for smoother, firmer-looking skin.
Remember, it typically takes about a month for skin cells to turn over and that, too, slows as you age. A good rule of thumb is to follow your skincare regimen consistently to see the visible results on your skin.
If you have any questions or need a customized skincare plan, answer a few quick questions about your skin and I’ll be glad to help you find the best products and value. https://dinahsmith.myrandf.com/solution-tool